London, and especially East London, is for many synonymous with street art, yet in preparation for the Olympics, artwork, deemed graffiti and offensive to the public is being removed from the streets by local councils.
Olympic organisers, LOCOG said they had not issued any official guidelines on removing graffiti yet Geoff Whitehouse of Very Nearly Almost, a magazine dedicated to street art, asserts, that over the last 12 months, Hackney has seen a general clear up, with many artists having their work painted over.
They say their freedom of expression is being restricted as artwork inspired by the Olympics is being quickly covered up. Street art supporters have, however, been active in articulating their discontentment, a petition to remove a large council banner advertising Brick Lane as the ‘Olympic 2012 Curry Capital’ received more than 1700 signatures, the banner was subsequently removed by the council overnight.
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